The impact of acid on your teeth

Beyond general teeth cleanings, cosmetic dentistry, and restorative dentistry there are a number of things that we can that benefit our dental health and spans brushing and flossing. From taking specific oral health probiotics to eating healthy foods, these are just a few additional methods to keep our teeth sparkly and cavity-free. But, how does acid impact our teeth?

Dr. Burchman is a dentist in Langhorne that specializes in high tech dentistry to provide you with safe, comfortable dental care. Learn more about the trouble with acid and how it impacts your teeth in today’s post.

Dental Health Beyond Brushing and Flossing

There are many things that aren’t great for your teeth — from chewing and biting hard substances like ice and toffee to consuming an excess amount of sugar — these things put you at greater risk for both chipping and breaking teeth, as well as cavities.

While daily brushing and flossing are vital to your dental health, we also need to take a look at acid and how it erodes the enamel in your teeth. And, when you have erosion you are at a greater risk for cavities.

Your Tooth Enamel

Tooth enamel is the protective layer on your teeth that acts as a sort of hard shell — it’s one of the most mineralized and hard substances in the body, even more so than your bones! Enamel plays a crucial role in your oral health because it shields the inner layers of your teeth from the sinister effects of plaque and acids.

When there is a consistent onslaught of acid bombarding the enamel, it begins to slowly affect the integrity of the teeth, thus the origins of tooth erosion. Erosion is causes damage when the acids coats and sticks and then interacts with bacteria to form a by-product of lactic acid. The lactic acid is even more acidic and decreases the pH in your mouth and begins by dissolving calcium phosphate, which leads to the inception of a cavity.   

The amount of damage that acidic substances cause is directly related to the foods you eat and how long the acid is left on your teeth.

So, it’s the relationship between the food you eat and your oral health routine that subjects you to cavities!

What You May Not Know About Acid

Most know what an acidic food or beverage is (more on that later) but one of the biggest culprits to increased acid production is sugar! We have a thriving bacterial ecosystem in our mouths complete with both good and bad bacteria, but it’s when our diet is laden with processed foods and sugary substances that this balance is tipped and the bad bacteria begin to take over.

Bad bacteria need to survive and they thrive on sugar, so when there is an abundance of it, there is an abundance of them! Sugar is bacteria’s favorite food and it gives them the fuel to replicate and perform their basic functions.

As we touched on earlier, when there is an abundance of sugar hanging around in your mouth the bacteria have a feast and release lactic acid, thus beginning to form cavities.

Now that you know a little more about the impact acid on your teeth, stay tuned for part two as we explore foods and beverages that are harmful to your enamel.

To schedule a dental cleaning with Dr. Burchman, connect with our Langhorne office today!